Twenty Time Evaluation

What did you enjoy about the experience?

I really liked this project and I thought that it was really unique compared to other projects that I have had. I liked how it gave me an opportunity to try something new when usually at home, I would be too lazy to do. I also liked having the feeling of accomplishment at the end knowing that I achieved my goals that I set for myself at the beginning of the school year. It was a really positive experience.

What was the most challenging aspect of your Twenty Time project?

I think the most challenging aspect of this project was managing my time wisely and forcing myself to watch one hour youtube tutorials. Sometimes I would get a vast amount done during Twenty Time, but sometimes I would sit and do nothing. I also had a few setbacks during the project and it was hard making those lost days up.

What is one thing you learned about yourself by participating in your Twenty Time project?

I can accomplish thing that I did not know I could if I just put my mind to it.

What are you most proud of? Why?

I am proud of my final result because it took an entire year to complete and it was very hard to do. I would not have been able to do this without the project forcing me to do so. I really like my final result and I listen to it regularly. I am also proud of learning how to use FL Studio because now, I have added something else to my repertoire.

What lessons did you learn from your successes?

I learned that I can succeed if I really want to. Trying new things can be very fun and make you feel really good when you are done.

What lessons did you learn from your failures?

I didn’t use a few Twenty Times to their full potential so I had to finish my song the night before presentations. It’s very important to use time wisely.

What is one thing about this project you believe you’ll remember for a long time to come?

I made my first song, that I might be able to sell on iTunes. This is really cool and I’m pretty sure it will be something I remember.

What is something the teacher could have done to make this project better?

Maybe gotten rid of the blog posts within 24 hours thing. I struggled with that.

Blog Post Number 15

I made some good progress on my song today. I think that I am basically done with my intro and I’m ready to move onto the drop. As I mentioned in my last post, most of the songs use the beat quietly in the background before the drop. I am planning to do this, but I have no idea what my drop is going to be like. Since it helped a lot last time, I decided to listen to more songs. I realized that the reason the songs sounded so good, was because the notes seemed to go together and create a satisfying feeling. Since I used to play piano, I knew that this must be the work of chords. I have forgotten a lot about them, but they are basically just a set of notes that go together. I’m thinking of relearning the chords and seeing if that helps. After I am done with this part of the song, I can just alter the intro a little bit and use that for the ending. That how most trap songs are.

Blog Post Number 14

At the beginning of this twenty time, I was completely drained of ideas. I tried and tried, but I was not able to find a way to continue my song leading up the the drop. I decided that I was going to try and do what I did at the beginning of the year. I was going to listen to some songs and try to analyze them. I picked some of the most popular trap songs on youtube and looked at the part I was having the most trouble with. I ended discovering that most of the songs used the main tune right before the drop as background music. It’s hard to explain, but doing this make the song kind of “explode” when it hits the drop. It is quiet, but then all of a sudden it’s loud. It sounds really good. I’m not quite sure what my main tune is going to be yet, but now I have and idea of how to proceed.

Blog Post Number 13

So this is where it got a little confusing. When making a song, you obviously can’t have only three notes being repeated in different ways. When I bought the full FL Studio package, it came with all of the available plugins. The FL Studio plugins are just like mini mixers that allow you to create special notes. The special notes can be anything from a different instrument to a certain beat sound. The problem with plugins is that every single one of them are different so you have to learn how to use them all. In the full package, there are over one hundred plugins. I looked online, and people said that you should just pick a few favorite plugins and learn how to use them well. After you master those, you can explore for more plugins. I spent most of this twenty time looking at potential plugins and searching on YouTube for tutorials on the plugins. Some plugins didn’t even have tutorials so I had to keep moving on. In the end, I found a few plugins that could work, but I’m not really sure what I can do with them because I’m not capable of using them to their full potential. I’m really excited to learn though because that will allow me to do so much more with FL Studio.

Blog Post Number 12

Sorry for the late post. I was feeling really sick during this twenty time and I actually went home. Turns out I had the flu, and I was out of school for a few days. I was unable to get out of bed so I haven’t worked on the song I have in a while. I am itching to get back to it, but I have a lot of work to make up. I also have lacrosse practice so I’m juggling a few things at a time right now. I don’t think I’ll be making up this twenty time for a while. Occasionally I open FL Studio over the weekend, but usually I’m out doing something else. I might watch a video tutorial in the car or something, but the downside of that is that I can’t experiment with it as I watch. Hopefully I can get a bunch accomplished next twenty time.

Blog Post Number 11

During this twenty time, I tried to put together what I learned and start making the song. I plugged in the notes I wanted for the beginning and slowly started making a beat around them. I will admit, at the beginning, it sounded atrocious. I was having a hard time making the third note and the bass making noise simultaneously. The third note was coming in too early and it sounded really awkward and rushed. I spent around thirty frustrating minutes playing around with the pattern area and trying to think of ways I could make it sound better. Then it hit me. I knew how to alter the pitch and rhythm of the notes. I realized that it sounded much better lower pitch because the bass went very well with it. By this time, I had around five minutes, and that’s about how long it takes to put away my laptop with all the cords. I feel like I’ve made some decent progress on my song. The thing I made was around seven seconds, but I feel like I’ll repeat it multiple times in the song. This is coming along well.

Blog Post Number 9

During this last Twenty Time, I watched a very long YouTube video that lasted about 40 minutes on my phone. It was hard to watch, but it was also very important. In the video, I learned how to alter the pitches of the sounds and beats in various ways. I also learned how to adjust the time and how many beats each note lasted. This was a key part in making the song. You do these thing by going to the panels where you adjust the beats and then dragging a few things around. My idea is to start out in a higher pitch, switch to a lower pitch, and then end with a higher pitch. After I watched that (somewhat boring) video, I had around ten minutes to test this out and screw around with the software. I am not even close fully understanding how this software works. I need to watch a lot more videos and I also need to polish my skills on the things I have already learned. The next Twenty Time I plan on watching a video on how to alter the beats more.

Blog Post 10: Evaluation

Instead of a work session, we evaluated each other during this Twenty Time. Everybody was given a sheet with a few questions. At first we were to answer the questions and evaluate ourselves, then the group we were put in had to rate us. I have hit many roadblocks this year. Near the very beginning of the year, my computer broke and I had to wait for it. That set me back by a lot. Another issue is how vast the software. I was reading online, and one of the pages said that the software takes years to fully master. Another person on a blog said that it took them two years to make a full song. I am rushing to learn as much as possible in such a limited amount of time. I am also hesitant to watch hour long video tutorials. Even if I am facing a few roadblocks, I do feel like I have had some great successes. I have managed to learn a ton in these past few months. I also have a brilliant idea for a song. To most people, that is the biggest step in music making. I look forward to the final product, and I definitely know I will be it. I do not need to               re-evaluate my goals. As long as I keep working hard, I know I can make an awesome song!

Blog Post Number 8

During this Twenty Time session, I feel like I’ve accomplished a huge step. Before this Twenty Time, I spent my fifty minutes messing around with the beats trying to create something cool, and then watching videos on Youtube to learn about the program. It was during Winter break when I realized that I had no idea what my song was going to be about. All I had stored on my computer were potential beats that I could try to implement into the song. This troubled me for a long time. I kept on listening to music to see if I could get any ideas from them. Finally, it hit me. In my elementary school, the music class had to come up with a piece to present during an assembly. The end product of that assignment was just three notes being repeated. I can hear those three notes clearly in my head, but I’m not sure what they are. I’m going to try to figure them out on my piano at home. I have already come up with multiple ideas on how to build off of those three notes and turn them actually in to a full song. Now I have something to actually focus on.

Blog Post Number 7

Today, December 2, 2015, was our sixth Twenty Time period. I am really happy about this work session because I got a lot accomplished. I created a few more beats by messing around and I really like them. I used the same sound generators that I used in the beat from the last Twenty Time so the new ones would fit the theme. They sound really good. I think after one more Twenty Time of creating beats, I’ll be ready to watch more video tutorials and learn how to edit and distort the sounds. After that, I’ll be ready to combine all of the different beats and edit that. I can’t wait to do this because I really want to hear what the outcome is. Half of the school year is almost over, I will have to work really hard at home and during Twenty Time to make this sound really good.